Maryland EXCELS recognizes child care and public prekindergarten programs that provide services above and beyond those outlined in the Maryland EXCELS Standards. Programs that attain these additional achievements will be acknowledged in the Find a Program Directory on the Maryland EXCELS website.


Accredited Program

Programs that have demonstrated quality standards and achieved accreditation by an agency recognized by the Maryland State Department of Education are eligible for the Accredited Program Achievement.

Allergy and Asthma Badge

Asthma & Allergy Friendly

The Asthma, Allergy and Anaphylaxis Prevention and Management Training, sponsored by MSDE, helps participants acquire relevant knowledge and skills to ensure an asthma- and allergy-safe childcare environment and identify and manage asthma and allergy emergencies.

Programs earn the Asthma and Allergy Friendly Achievement upon successful completion of the training.

Cultural and Linguistic Competency Badge

Cultural and Linguistic Competency

Culture influences all aspects of a child’s development and frames his or her experiences of early learning. When an early childhood or school-age program accepts “the legitimacy of children’s home language, respects the home culture, and promotes and encourages the active involvement and support of all families including extended and nontraditional family units,” it is exhibiting cultural and linguistic competence. (NAEYC, 1995)

Programs earn this achievement by completing the Cultural and Linguistic Competency Application and the Pathways to Cultural Competency Checklist. Email for more information.

Eco-Friendly Program Badge

Eco-Friendly Program

Early education and school-age programs become greater community partners when children and staff protect the environment with their practices.

Programs achieve the Eco-Friendly Program Achievement by participating in at least one of these initiatives:

Family Engagement Badge

Family Engagement

Programs who have earned this achievement have demonstrated best practices when developing meaningful family engagement opportunities in their programs.

Following the completion of a training module, programs will use the Maryland EXCELS Family Engagement Additional Achievement Application to assess their practices and develop an action plan. Email for more information.

Health and Wellness Badge

Health and Wellness

The early years set the stage for healthy life-long habits. Committing to serving healthy foods and promoting physical activity have positive impacts on child development.

Following the completion of the Healthy Kids, Healthy Futures modules, programs will use the Maryland EXCELS Health and Wellness Additional Achievement Application to assess their practices. Email for more information.

Judy Center Badge

Judy Center

Judy Center Early Learning Hubs, also known as “Judy Centers,” prepare children for success in school and life. By connecting families with high-quality, comprehensive, full-day, full-year early education services, the Judy Centers promote school readiness for children ages birth through five. Utilizing a multigenerational approach for families and children, and providing professional development for early childhood educators, Judy Centers help to support all of the adults in a child’s early years.

Established Judy Center Early Learning Hubs, as well as programs that have entered into a formal partnership with a Judy Center Early Learning Hub, are eligible for this achievement.

Military Child Care in Your Neighborhood Badge

Military Child Care in Your Neighborhood

Military Child Care in Your Neighborhood (MCCYN), a program for eligible families who cannot access military-operated child care due to distance or waitlists, helps offset the costs of community-based care.

Child care programs participating in the Military Child Care in Your Neighborhood (MCCYN) program are eligible for this achievement.

Quality Business Practices Badge

Quality Business Practices

Successful programs have sound business practices and strong organizational structure in addition to providing quality child care and early education.

Programs achieve the Quality Business Practices Achievement by participating in one of these initiatives:

For more information or to determine specific requirements for each Maryland EXCELS Additional Achievement, email your Program Coordinator or